To Overcome Hardware Supply Chain Issues, Go Virtual

Availability of Network Edge in 25 metros simplifies global expansion for businesses and service providers

David Tairych
To Overcome Hardware Supply Chain Issues, Go Virtual

One lesson digital leaders worldwide have learned from the pandemic is the increasing need to adapt quickly to disruption. Companies must be more agile, both in how they run their businesses and in how they take advantage of expansion opportunities in spite of supply chain issues. Network virtualization can help solve both challenges.

Expanding networking functions into a new metro traditionally required enterprises to make a large upfront investment in physical hardware devices. Those devices often took several months to be deployed; since the pandemic started, the wait has grown even longer. In contrast, virtual network functions (VNFs) allow a company to enter a new metro at software speed and deploy services with no upfront CAPEX commitment. If that new market doesn’t work out, the enterprise can scale down the network services quickly. Or, if it is successful, they can either continue relying on the VNFs or augment them by deploying physical infrastructure. This speed and flexibility is the reason the value of virtualization continues to increase today.

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Because more enterprises are relying on virtual network services to help fulfill demands as they extend their reach to end users, we’ve expanded Network Edge to 25 major metros around the world.

Network Edge is a VNF platform from Equinix that gives users access to virtual network devices from leading vendors and additional services via Equinix Fabric™ software-defined interconnection. The Network Edge platform provides networking consistency, repeatability and flexibility across major global markets allowing users to access services with just a few clicks and no physical infrastructure costs.

Using Network Edge is simple. Just select from leading VNF vendors or use an existing license to deploy virtual networking services and connect instantly to digital ecosystems including clouds, networks and digital supply chains. The process takes only a few minutes and provides access to network services at a predictable cost.

Network Edge provides cost savings and convenience

Digital businesses use Network Edge to:

  • Address supply chain issues and reduce reliance on physical infrastructure.
  • Route traffic to multiple clouds worldwide, securely and with low latency, as part of a hybrid multicloud architecture.
  • Create redundancy for traditional physical infrastructure.

Network Edge removes many of the costs and complexity around supply chain and capacity management, allowing customers to focus on the functionality needed to build an environment for optimum user experience. Industries from IT to fintech to retail rely on Network Edge to modernize their networks and deploy digital-ready infrastructure at the edge, in minutes, and more cost-effectively than physical infrastructure. Consider what Network Edge solved for VR Group, a Finnish-based travel, logistics and maintenance service company.

VR Group needed to replace a legacy network that had become complex and cumbersome. The company needed fast, reliable access to run employee-facing business operation applications on Microsoft Azure and customer-facing applications on AWS. Working with Cisco and Equinix to improve the performance, scalability and resiliency of its hybrid multicloud interconnectivity, the architecture team at VR Group created the right solution: an agile digital infrastructure with Network Edge and Equinix Fabric to improve cloud application performance and cut costs.

To extend the reach of Network Edge, some enterprises incorporate Equinix Metal™, an automated, interconnected Bare Metal as a Service that deploys physical infrastructure in minutes, with an OPEX model. Customers can deploy compute and storage on Equinix Metal at edge locations. They can then leverage Network Edge to provide VNFs, such as SD-WAN gateways and virtual firewalls, for users to securely connect to Equinix Metal compute and storage services. Network Edge with Equinix Fabric can support hybrid multicloud architectures through private, software-defined interconnection between multiple cloud service providers and Equinix Metal.

Additionally, VNFs on Network Edge can help businesses enable multicloud networking, streamline network integrations and connect their remote workforce to maintain business continuity.

Deploying virtual infrastructure solves for scale and flexibility

How and when your business chooses to deploy VNFs via Network Edge would depend on the exact infrastructure requirements you’re trying to meet. The flexibility and compatibility of the Network Edge platform creates a variety of choices for you to scale into the virtual world. It’s like taking a set of ingredients and determining which ones to use to bake your own recipe. You determine how Network Edge and other Equinix solutions will work best to help extend your reach to end users, without sacrificing speed or quality.

Other benefits of Network Edge include:

  • Getting data closer to customers.
  • Managing network infrastructure easily via an intuitive dashboard.
  • Establishing a layer of redundancy spread across multiple metros.

To learn how using virtual network services can accelerate your global expansion and optimize your network access with no additional hardware required, read the Network Edge data sheet today.


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